Sunday, June 22, 2014

Of South Dakota Republicans, Presidential Impeachment--And Collective Asininity

     Ya gotta give it to the delegates at the South Dakota Republican Convention that ended yesterday.  They sure won't let common sense, history, political reality and self-respect get in the way of their determination to make collective asininity a public feature of their gatherings.  This year they concluded with a determined call for the impeachment of President Obama.  One delegate claimed "I've got a thick book on impeachable offenses by the President."  Another invoked the cudgel of higher authority by saying "If anyone in this room cannot see the horrendous traitorous scandals run by the Obama administration, I will pray for you." 
     Good grief.  What is it with some Republicans and their propensity to use  God (the losing GOP national platform in 2012 mentioned God 12 times vs. zero for its victorious Dem counterpart) as an instrument of political intimidation?  On this particular point, I find plenty of fault with Barack Obama's presidency, but I don't consider him traitorous and wonder why on earth anybody feels the need to pray for me over this disagreement.  Come off it, fellow Pubs.  Religion is an unbecoming fixture on our political sleeves.
    Meantime, the SD GOP's doyenne, U.S. Representative Kristi Noem, wouldn't even go along with the impeachment nonsense.  "Noem doesn't believe impeachment is the 'best way' to deal with Obama," according to news reports, which was actually a considerable rebuke, coming as it did from a Rep who had no hesitation to go to extremes in the recent past:  Noem voted to shut down the federal government last Fall, as well as hobble the U.S. Treasury's ability to pay America's debts by voting against raising the debt ceiling at around the same time.  Readers of this blog know that I consider her crazy for having done so.  For some of these Republican "Impeach Obama!" hotheads to make Kristi Noem look and sound like a paragon of moderation and common sense says much about the make-up of GOP party workers and pros in South Dakota.
     Through all of this I've been scouring news reports and stories about the convention--as well as the SDGOP website itself--to get a rundown on how the state's party comes down on issues of real relevance to South Dakotans.  So far I've found none.  This is especially dispiriting because all the impeachment noise has effectively crowded out the messages that the GOP should be sending out to South Dakota's voters.  I mean, like, wassup with teacher salaries, lousy wages, the labor shortage, Keystone XL, uranium mining in the Black Hills, the ridiculous number of sales tax exemptions, Slaughterhouse EB-5, Medicaid expansion, and so many others?  Either the party's right wing prima donnas just sucked up all the media oxygen with their impeachment fixation or . . . Pubs as a group just don't have a clue about where they stand on real issues and created the brouhaha as a cover for their own helplessness.
   

11 comments:

  1. Hey John Lynn from Madville here.

    It just seems like all fluff to me. Impeach Obama, Eliminate the IRS, EPA, Dept of Education, Obamacare or whatever. I just see an attitude of arrogance and complacency being the dominate party with basically no competition. It seems that they don't strive to challenge themselves to be better which is sad given the great responsibility they have in many offices of government with all the issues we face as a state. Look at all the fluff yet every year it seems like the hard issues that require risk, courage and innovation are never really dealt with.

    They are just covering their butts to maintain power and protect those who support them which are a minority here in SD.

    One last observation. So if you run for any statewide or national office these days regardless of party you need to have a campaign photo with you shooting a gun and holding a bible? Come on! We are better than that!

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  2. Good column John. Question. Any idea what Rounds thinks of the impeachment resolution?

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    1. Strictly guessing that Rounds thinks it's pretty much a waste of time but can't say so for fear of offending the hotheads in the state GOP. I like the way Dems are challenging him to make his position know.

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  3. Good point on the absence of discussion of more substantive issues. Has the SDGOP released a copy of the full platform and convention resolutions yet?

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  4. I've seen nothing so far, Cory.

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  5. President Dwight Eisenhower, Republican, uttered these words on November 8, 1954:

    "Should any political party attempt to abolish social security, unemployment insurance and eliminate labor laws and farm programs, you would not hear of that party again in our political history. There is a tiny splinter group, of course, that believes that you can do these things. Among them are a few Texas oil millionaires, and an occasional politician or businessman from other areas. Their number is negligible and they are stupid."

    Read more at http://www.snopes.com/politics/quotes/ikesocial.asp#OvMiOpvEkW4EXQtb.99

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  6. Hey John, Lynn here again.

    I found the roll call for Republican County Delegates voting for the Obama Impeachment Resolution but am curious why none of these delegates have come out and identified themselves on how they voted. I suppose we could all make a few phone calls and find out who voted but why not come out and identify yourselves and state how you voted on these resolutions?

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    1. David Montgomery's blog over at the Sioux Falls Argus Leader has some deeper information, but he notes that he can't get a delegate-by-delegate vote count. Here's his piece: http://www.argusleader.com/story/davidmontgomery/2014/06/23/impeachment-resolution-votes/11262141/

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    2. John Lynn here again.

      I read the county delegate vote but It appears these delegates other than those like Unruh are afraid to identify themselves by name on who voted for the impeachment. No one has come forth yet. I wonder why?

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    3. They might not want to be challenged in places like this, Lynn.

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    4. Sorry John I meant to say I have not those delegates come forth anywhere whether it be on blogs such as DWC or the media. I'm not starry eyed with Obama's time in office but you state it well above. It just ticks me off again with their misplaced priorities to put it as politely as I can. Lynn from Madville

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